BERKELEY – The California men’s basketball team will face Arkansas its opening game of the championship round of the EA SPORTS Maui Invitational on Nov. 25 as the complete bracket for the 30th annual tournament played at Maui’s oceanfront Lahaina Civic Center was announced on Wednesday.
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The Championship Round will feature eight of the top teams in college basketball. Joining Cal in the three-day tournament is Arkansas, Baylor, Dayton, Gonzaga, Minnesota, Syracuse and host Chaminade. These eight programs will face off during Thanksgiving week competing to hoist the Wayne Duke Championship Trophy.
Cal will open the championship-round portion of the tournament in Hawaii against the Razorbacks on ESPN2 at noon (PT) on Monday, Nov. 25 in the first game of the day at the Lahaina Civic Center. The other three championship-round matchups on Nov. 25 include Minnesota-Syracuse (2:30 p.m. PT), Baylor-Chaminade (6:30 p.m. PT) and Dayton-Gonzaga (9 p.m. PT).
Cal and Arkansas have met once before, also in Hawaii. The Bears and the Razorbacks squared off in the Rainbow Classic in Honolulu on Dec. 30, 1986, a 75-58 win for Arkansas.
The Bears will face either Syracuse or Minnesota in their next game of the EA SPORTS Maui Invitational on Tuesday, Nov. 26. Cal faced the Orange in the third round of the NCAA Tournament in San Jose, Calif. last season, falling 66-60.
The championship game of the EA SPORTS Maui Invitational will be Wednesday, Nov. 27 at 7 p.m. (PT) on ESPN.
Cal’s Nov. 15 matchup with Oakland at Haas Pavilion in Berkeley, Calif. will serve as its opening game of the EA SPORTS Maui Invitational before the Bears travel to Hawaii with the seven other schools for the Championship Round.
Cal last played in the EA SPORTS Maui Invitational in 1996, defeating No. 25 Iowa and No. 15 Kansas in the prestigious tournament.
The Golden Bears return four starters, five of their top seven scorers, and their top-two rebounders from a 21-win campaign last season, while also welcoming in a top-20 recruiting class this fall. Cal capped its winningest five-year stretch in more than 50 years with an appearance in the third round of the NCAA Tournament in 2012-13. Head coach Mike Montgomery, the NCAA’s ninth-winningest active Division I men’s basketball coach with 656 victories, enters his sixth season in Berkeley as the fourth-winningest coach (272 career league wins) in Pac-12 history.